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Creative approaches make trains run

Published: 9 October 2012

With new creative methods for developing switches to Trafikverket improve timeliness and reduce maintenance costs for rail traffic. Creative team led by researchers from LTU and with representatives from the Swedish Transport Administration and subcontractors Infranord and Vossloh Nordic Switch Systems will develop both new rbetsmetoder as prototypes of innovative switches.

The Swedish Transport Administration has need for methods that give them better opportunities to drive technology development of switches in close collaboration with Vossloh Nordic Switch Systems where Björn Lundwall's development manager. - Vossloh is at the forefront in our field today and we want to maintain our position in the international market, he said. We see this project as a way to supplement our operations with additional tools that will help us to develop the business. Our participation is aimed not only to drive technology development. It is also a way to attract new customers and new skills, and it is particularly gratifying and is expected to enhance our competitiveness in this little new approach.

By developing creative new approach that takes into account early customer needs and improve specifications - and by developing innovative prototypes - the gears function and life improved while reducing life cycle costs. The new working methods should include help points to the manufacturer Vossloh, early in the product development phase, gain valuable input about new features and maintenance requirements from the Swedish Transport Administration and Infranord. All in order to optimize the design of the gears and create a "win-win" situation for the parties.

- The creative team will test established innovative approaches to real problems and generate ideas for new innovative solutions, says researcher Anna Malou Petersson. By measuring the number of ideas, solutions, how the tested methods are perceived by team members, etc., we should be able to determine which methods work best. Based on the tests we develop new and improved innovative methods adapted to the needs of the parties. The ideas will also result in prototypes for new switches.

Project Optimal methods for innovative product development and decision support (OptiKrea) led by Professor Jan Lundberg, Department for operations and maintenance technology, and funded by the Railway Technical Centre, JVTC, and the cooperating companies.

Text: Åsa Svedjeholm

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